Choosing the Right Mobile App Platform

If you are looking for a mobile app for your business, the process of creation and development can be daunting, to say the least. There are so many choices out there and all have convincing arguments for why they are the best strategy. Here are some considerations for choosing the right mobile app platform.

Provide a Great User Experience

Many people are enticed the lure of a “cross-platform app” or an “adaptive website.” Unfortunately, the challenge of seamlessly transitioning code across multiple platforms is still too arduous in terms of user experience. Many cross-platform vendors use automated “solutions” that are too simple to provide optimum user experience.

Don’t be fooled promises that vendors can’t keep. Nothing can kill your business faster than an embarrassing app for it will be the face of your company—make sure it looks attractive.

Multiple Approaches

Apps are now widespread. They are used to stimulate business but also to engage customers on the back end and to help employees be productive. Often, it is wise to use three apps for three different purposes instead of trying to cram them all into one app. Stay flexible in your approach to apps.

High Performance

Similar to an attractive app, it must perform well. Cross-platform or “hybrid” apps using HTML5 can often deliver great performance. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that they will do so. We would recommend starting with the two most popular platforms, iOS and Android, and having native apps made for each.

Hybrid apps work well in many situations but a native mobile app is still the most effective. In other words, an iOS app still works best for Apple products and an Android app is best for Android products. Remember this during the creation and development process.

Collaboration Among Employees

For larger businesses who need employees to collaborate using apps, there are some features that you will want to see included. You will want tools to allow them to collaborate on projects within the app, with separate elements able to be developed concurrently. You also want the ability to test and report errors.

Security is Important

Your app must have the ability to protect the sensitive information that will be provided users, so a state of the art security and authentication protocol is necessary. We recommend features such as on-device encryption, secure communication between server and client, access control and offline authentication.

By 2016, mobile commerce is projected to reach $31 billion. By the end of next year, mobile apps will be responsible for 50% of online sales. There is a lot happening and a lot of money at stake. Without adequate security, you will open yourself to lawsuits that can severely damage your bottom line.

Better safe than sorry.

Embrace the Cloud

Your app will be connected to various back-end and cloud-based systems. Back-end and cloud integration will increase the functionality of your app while increasing its performance, scalability, maintenance overhead, compliance and time to market.

However, make sure that the app can be integrated into your existing infrastructure. Don’t make wholesale changes to accommodate your mobile app. Instead, allow the developer to accommodate your infrastructure, in the cloud and on the back end.

Mobile Device Management and Mobile App Management

Businesses whose employees work on apps are carrying a wealth of proprietary information on their phones. With the popularity of bring your own device (BYOD) policies in many businesses, it is becoming necessary for Mobile App Management (MAM) and Mobile Device Management (MDM) functionality within business apps.

MAM and MDM are also valuable in apps for customers, as they can enable and enhance customer engagement collecting, protecting and analysing data derived from customers.

Customer Service and Support

A lot of people offer mobile app creation and development but few offer the support that is crucial to the success of your business app. Your mobile app developer must be able to deliver the functionality that you want in your app, troubleshoot and fix problems with updates to the app.

Make sure that your mobile app developer has the knowledge and experience to fulfil all of your needs.

The Platform Question

Our preferred choice is exactly what we offer: native Android and iOS apps. You can start with one mobile app on your most popular platform. After the creation and development process, we would recommend filling the gap with the other platforms immediately.

Currently, Android has a 62.4% market share in Australia while iOS has a 28.5% market share. In most markets, that means you will reach more people with Android than iOS but this is not etched in stone.

Call 1300 650 253 for a consultation today.

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